Ever stumble upon something that everyone else seems to know about or has tried, but for you it's a brand new oh-my-gosh discovery, and then you feel like an idiot, because, where have you been?
For me, that something was the combination of fresh strawberries, sugar and balsamic vinegar. I've certainly heard rumblings about it, but the idea of adding any kind of vinegar to strawberries just didn't seem right.
How wonderful to be oh-so-wrong.
Of course you do need to use balsamic vinegar, an aged, deeply flavored, somewhat sweet vinegar. An ordinary vinegar probably won't taste that good; if that's all you have use some grated lemon zest and a little lemon juice instead.
The mousse is extremely easy to make — folded together whipped cream, mascarpone, and ricotta. This recipe is based on one from Sacramento food celebrity chef, Biba Caggiano, and is a great mostly make-ahead recipe for summer entertaining.
More Easy Fruit Desserts to Make
Ricotta-Mascarpone Mousse with Balsamic Strawberries
You may halve this recipe, if you like.
Even better than halving it? Freeze leftovers! Surprisingly, this mousse freezes beautifully. Place leftover mousse and berries in separate zip-top freezer bags and press out any remaining air. Freeze for up to 2 months. To serve, thaw overnight in the fridge. To serve, snip off a corner of the bag of the mousse and use it to neatly pipe right onto the berries.
8 ounces mascarpone cheese
1 cup heavy cream
1 (15 to 16-ounce) container whole milk ricotta cheese
3/4 cup sugar, divided
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
2 pounds strawberries, hulled and cut into quarters
1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
Beat the mascarpone:
In a large bowl, beat the mascarpone cheese with a rubber spatula until it's smooth and creamy. Spread it around the base of the bowl so it can come to room temperature as you whip the cream.
Whip the cream to soft peaks:
In a large bowl, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Set aside.
For cream that whips up faster, chill your bowl and whisk or beaters in the freezer for 20 minutes prior to whipping.
Combine the ricotta mascarpone mixture:
Add the ricotta, 1/2 cup of the sugar, and the lemon zest to the bowl with the beaten mascarpone. Using a rubber spatula, fold the ingredients together until they are thoroughly combined and smooth.
Fold whipped cream into ricotta mixture, chill:
Gradually fold the whipped cream into the ricotta until the mixture is smooth. Cover and refrigerate for about 2 hours.
Mix strawberries with sugar and balsamic:
Put strawberries in another bowl. 30 minutes before serving gently mix in the balsamic vinegar and remaining 1/4 cup sugar.
Make sure you don't let the strawberries sit in the balsamic vinegar much longer than 30 minutes before serving or the acidity of the vinegar will cook the strawberries.
Assemble, then serve:
When you are ready to serve, fill glass bowls halfway with the strawberries and their juices. Spoon on the ricotta-mascarpone mousse or use a pastry bag to pipe the mousse.
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If you have leftover mousse, serve it as a dip for fresh fruit for an encore dessert or quick snack. Or freeze it for up to 2 months.
|Nutrition Facts (per serving)|
|Amount per serving|
|% Daily Value*|
|Total Fat 31g||40%|
|Saturated Fat 19g||97%|
|Total Carbohydrate 32g||12%|
|Dietary Fiber 2g||8%|
|Total Sugars 27g|
|Vitamin C 68mg||339%|
|*The % Daily Value (DV) tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2,000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice.|